Synopses & Reviews
When Arthur Clennam returns to England after many years abroad, he takes a kindly interest in Amy Dorrit, his mother’s seamstress, and in the affairs of Amy’s father, William Dorrit, a man of shabby grandeur, long imprisoned for debt in the Marshalsea. As Arthur soon discovers, the dark shadow of the prison stretches far beyond its walls to affect the lives of many, from the kindly Mr. Pancks, the reluctant rent-collector of Bleeding Heart Yard, and the tipsily garrulous Flora Finching, to Merdle, an unscrupulous financier, and the bureaucratic Barnacles in the Circumlocution Office. A masterly evocation of the state and psychology of imprisonment, Little Dorrit is one of the supreme works of Dickens’s maturity.
- This revised edition includes expanded notes and updated suggestions for further reading
- Includes a chronology of Dickens's life and works, original illustrations, and an Introduction by Stephen Wall examining Dickens's own memories of his father's incarceration in Marshalsea
Coming to PBS in March 2009-a MasterpieceTM Classic production of Charles Dickens's Little Dorrit
Charles Dickens 's great satire on poverty, riches, and imprisonment, Little Dorrit is the story of Arthur Clennam, a man whose kindly interest in Amy Dorrit, his mother's seamstress, assures him nothing but trouble. Her father, William Dorrit, a man of shabby grandeur, has long been imprisoned for debt in the Marshalsea. A masterly evocation of the state and psychology of imprisonment, Little Dorrit is a supreme work of Dickens's maturity.
About the Author
Charles Dickens was born on February 7, 1812, in Landport, Portsea, England. He died in Kent on June 9, 1870. The second of eight children of a family continually plagued by debt, the young Dickens came to know not only hunger and privation,but also the horror of the infamous debtors prison and the evils of child labor. A turn of fortune in the shape of a legacy brought release from the nightmare of prison and “slave” factories and afforded Dickens the opportunity of two years formal schooling at Wellington House Academy. He worked as an attorneys clerk and newspaper reporter until his Sketches by Boz (1836) and The Pickwick Papers (1837) brought him the amazing and instant success that was to be his for the remainder of his life. In later years, the pressure of serial writing, editorial duties, lectures, and social commitments led to his separation from Catherine Hogarth after twenty-three years of marriage. It also hastened his death at the age of fifty-eight, when he was characteristically engaged in a multitude of work.